Kandaen is a romantic comedy without a heartbeat but enough pulse to crack you up.
| Rohit Ramachandran
Vasanth (Shanthnoo Bhagyaraj) falls in love with Narmada (Rashmi Gautham) because he feels a "pudhu vibration" that's powerful enough to jerk him out of his senses and make him fake blindness with the hope that she would reciprocate out of pity. I'm not sure he succeeds because she takes him out on a date to a movie. His entire act of faking blindness is ingratiating. You can't wait for him to drop it, which he does, early on in the film and you sigh in relief, but then you're shown that that was merely a fiction of his imagination.
He charms his dimwitted lady love by telling her that he can't see her face but he can see her heart. Both the leads attempt suicide. The romance in the film is utter commonplace nonsense. There's a dialogue uttered by the girl's father "You might be blind to fall in love with a blind man, but I won't let you marry him." Mugil must've thought it to be the product of a brainwave, but it's the stupidest thing I've heard in a while. Once he drops the act, the film starts crawling uphill with bleeding fingernails and redeems itself. Shanthanoo has clearly done his research to see things from a blind man's perspective and Santhanam's comic timing is spot-on. The film is a cruel joke on the blind and I didn't like what they were doing but I couldn't keep my sides from splitting. The sound effects combined with the exaggeratedly stupid events worked very well. Its premise isn't original but AC Mugil's treatment is relatively different.
The best romantic comedies walked the fine line that divides comedy and romance. The characters are developed and so are their relationships. Kandaen doesn't take the risk. It walks with one foot on either side of the line. The foot on comedy marches forward steadily dragging the other foot that should've been severed off.
Critic: Rohit Ramachandran
2.5 out of 5 (Fairly Good)
WHAT THE RATINGS MEAN:
0.0 - 1.4 : Poor
1.5 - 1.7: Poor, A Few Good Parts
1.8 - 2.3: Okay
2.4 - 2.9: Fairly Good
3.0 - 3.4: Good
3.5 - 5.0: Very Good